PRINT Summer 2014


WHEN ARTFORUM INVITED ME to curate a portfolio for this issue, I pulled some of my favorite zines from recent years, mostly titles I’ve come across since moving to New York in 2010 (and starting the 8 Ball Zine Fair and the Newsstand, a store in a subway station that had shelves stocked with zines and books instead of candy and newspapers). In the spreads that follow, I have included some of the more influential classics from the past decade (material by well-known zine makers such as Dash Snow, Raymond Pettibon, Mark Gonzales, and Ed Templeton) but also projects by lesser known but equally productive artists (including Weirdo Dave, Nathaniel Matthews, Nick Sethi, Pat McCarthy, and Nina Hartmann) as well as gems by some of the most interesting small publishers, many of whom (Hamburger Eyes, Pau Wau, Swill Children, New York: Year Zero, and Deadbeat Club) often experiment with nonstandard forms of binding and layout. For me, all you need to make a successful zine is to put time and love into it, whether that means spending weeks on a computer tweaking the layout like a photobook and hand-binding each cover with thread, or going down to your local pharmacy with a pile of 4 x 6" prints and running off copies on their 5¢ machine.

I want to be clear, however, that this selection is drawn only from where my hands could reach. What makes a zine special is its relationship to a certain place and a specific community: Typically, only a very limited number of copies circulate—and even fewer outside the publication’s home city. Which is to say, if there’s a girl in a small town in Russia who’s producing the greatest zines in the world, we would only know if we were to go there and meet her or someone in her scene. This is what differentiates a zine from a blog, and why zines are a dying art. This is also probably the reason why we love them so much.

Lele Saveri is a photographer and the curator of 8 Ball Zines and Muddguts Gallery in Brooklyn, NY.

Top: Raymond Pettibon, Twice-Tolled Bells, 1996. Bottom: Dash Snow, My Mind Has Finally Accepted That It Is Right, no. 1 (2005).

Top: Weirdo Dave, Fuck This Life, no. 20 (2014). Bottom: Hamburger Eyes, no. 13 (2009).